Get Gorgeous Black & White Portraits With These Portrait Photography Tips

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Anyone with a camera these days doesn't become a photographer instantly. Some knowledge and a lot of practice is what make a good photographer. Explore your photography interests and find out what suits you best. If portrait photography is what interests you the most, then the following are some portrait photography tips that you must read to brush up on your skills. Photography is an art we all know it, and these portrait photography tips will help you master it.

When you look at a gorgeous black a white portrait, there is always a sense of timeless beauty about it.  The subject could be a child, teenager, or adult; the portrait could have been shot in any era; the background could be relevant or not, and the expression happy or sad, yet the beauty of it never fails to fascinate.  Here are some portrait photography tips to get gorgeous black and white portraits of any subject.

Black And White Portrait Photography Tips to Get Gorgeous Portraits


Setup

When planning a black and white portrait shoot, look for a setup that has enough natural light but does not require your subject to pose directly in sunlight.  Ideally, you need three sides to be enclosed and the fourth open.  Other options would be against a large tree trunk, against a building or wall, or on a well-lit porch.  The idea is to try and get ambient light on your subject from one direction.
   

Subject placement

When shooting, get your subject to stand near the periphery of the shaded area, i.e., near the light-shade boundary.  This way you get bright enough light on your subject, but they are posing in the shade.  Always shoot with the subject facing the direction of the sun, which means the sun should be behind you.
   

Make the best use of natural reflectors

Since you are shooting in the shade, reflectors would be extremely useful to light up any areas of shadow on your subject’s face.  Instead of carrying reflectors with you, make use of the natural reflectors around.  If you are shooting in a three-sided shed, the walls would work as reflectors.  The same applies to building walls, pavements, or any light-colored solid structure that will bounce light onto your subject’s face.
   

Focus on eyes

This is a basic rule in portrait photography but is most important in black and white portraits.  As they say, the eyes can tell a story.  When shooting, use a wide aperture on your lens.  This way you get a shallow field of depth.  Focus on the eyes of your subject so that the face comes into focus and the background fades out.  You will end up with gorgeous and expressive black and white portraits.
   

Range of emotions 

Get your subject to express a range of emotions.  You can do this by talking to them while shooting.  Ask them to think of happy and sad thoughts, and keep shooting.  Also give them time to be themselves, and keep shooting.  You will get gorgeous expressions ranging from serene, mysterious or pensive to happy, joyful, and free. 

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